Should I just keep my distance?

by wavvy 19 Replies latest jw friends

  • wavvy

    Reading other people's posts, its obvious that those of us who still have contact with our JW family are constantly bombarded with sick propaganda designed to make us feel guilty and scared. We are all so happy to be out, yet these contacts with our family revive all the bad feelings.

    My parents are always calling me to meet up with them for coffee or something. I don't want to go. I don't want to see them. I don't want them to be a part of this new life of mine because I don't need that kind of crap all the time. Although I'm not D'd, I have cut off all my JW friends who still want to see me, because I don't want to hear them spew out that garbage all the time. I don't want to spend time with people who are always looking for insidious ways to try and lure me back. Always slipping little things into the conversation. They think they are subtle, but they are not.

    With friends, well, its sad but thats life. I've made new friends. With my parents though, its a different story. They are old. They are terribly torn up by the fact that their world has gone crazy and out of control. So many of their kids and grandkids are out in the 'world'. So, makes me feel guilty that I dont' want to see them. I am torn between this need to stay well away from them for the sake of my own sanity, and the sad fact that my parents are old and this may be the last few years I will have to spend time with them. I suppose I should just be grateful that they will even speak to me, given the number of people on this board whose families have cut them off entirely.


  • cameo-d

    Just love them.

    Ignore what they say and just be there for them when they need you.

  • kitten whiskers
    kitten whiskers

    Personally, I think you will regret pushing them away. You are right saying you are fortunate they still talk to you.

    Could you kindly let them know you love them and value time spent with them, but can't deal with pressure. Their life is wrapped up in Kingdom Hall Land. Common ground is very hard to find, and certain topics aren't appropriate (that great birthday party, or your christmas decorations). You can find common ground though, and still have a loving relationship. It will be different from the previous relationship with them, but if you love them, I suggest talking to them and trying. If they push you away, that's out of your control, but right have hope.

  • Farkel


    If you don't want them to bug you anymore, tell them that you wanted to give a couch of yours to a friend, but when you started to move it out of your home, it began screaming and cursing at you, so you were forced to keep it. Then invite the dubs to come inside and sit down.

    That should do the trick.


  • wavvy

    sigh...i was probably hoping that you would all say thats its ok to just ride off into the sunset and forget all about them

    but I guess you are is precious no matter what. I just have to be a bit braver about setting "boundaries" (altho I do hate that cliche).

  • asilentone

    wavvy, if they talk about anything that you do not want to hear about, tell them that you do not want to hear about it anymore, you can start your own new subject to restart the conversation about something else. I did that with my JW parents, it worked out for me. Try to be respectful as much as you can under the circumstances. Good Luck!

  • outbackaussie

    I remember that prickly uncomfortable feeling with my family. It's still weird now but less so. I used to feel alot of pressure to "perform" properly when I was having anything social to do with my dub family members. Now given it is mostly the odd phonecall or letter from my aunt and grandparents I don't feel as stressed by it. If anything I feel we skirt round the edges of "IT" meaning anything to do with JW'ness. Probably because I used to assume that if I said anything contoversial it would turn into some epic drama, but time has shown me that usually I was being overly sensitive and nothing bad ever came of things.

    But they stopped trying to preach to me a long time ago. I figured they just gave up trying or decided to respect my silence on the subject. Maybe it means they think I am unsaveable LOL You could possibly see it as a positive that they are trying so hard to reach you, at least they think you are worth saving teehee!

    Maybe if you use an analogy in a conversation, something along the lines of how you were talking to a former friend from the church and how their constant queries and preaching made you feel really uncomfortable and not able to be honest with them, your parents might see their actions could be doing the same thing? That way you don't have to confront them directly but they can get the insight into your feelings.

    Hope you work it out Wavvy :)

  • flipper

    WAVVY- When you do see your parents one thing you can do is guide the conversation and where it goes. Talk about authentic family things, you know eating meals, doing fun things as a family , if your parents are old, play cards, watch a movie together , make a meal for them. Just stay off JW topics and it will be easier to have an authentic non-cult relationship with them. If they keep trying to go back to the JW topics - change the conversation or kindly tell them you'd rather not discuss certain topics. It is frustrating but setting decent boundaries will help

  • raindrops

    Hi!! Newbie here!!! Okay, I feel the same way too when I visit my parents. I have to actually sit down and emotionally prepare myself and tell myself not to feel guilty or ashamed of my decision to leave the JW lifestyle before I go over to their place. But I think you are blessed to still have them there talking to you and wanting to spend time with you. I think they really do care about you. Like the others said, just change the topic if they start with JW topics. Show them that you have unconditional love for them. Show them that no matter what religion or beliefs they choose to follow, you respect and love them. That is what I try to do when I go over to my family's house. But lately I have been calling my mom and she has not answered back in a week. I am afraid I am losing them. I wish you the best!!

  • jamiebowers

    To wavvy: Being a jw usually consists of lots of gloom, doom, and drudgery. Do something fun with them, and maybe it will appeal to the non-cult part of their personalities.

    Welcome to JWN and good luck with your parents, raindrops!

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